The East Anglian Fabulation

So, what's all this about then?

Well, in 2015, a group of East Anglian storytellers got together, called themselves The East Anglian Fabulation, and put on a celebration of everything that was great about the fun, irreverent, entertaining tradition of East Anglian storytelling. The first two festivals were based at The Blaxhall Ship Inn in Suffolk, which has a thriving folk art tradition going back centuries. They were great successes with audiences and storytellers alike. In 2017,  we reach out further across East Anglia going across the border into Norfolk at The Locks Inn Geldeston another fine pub with a great folk art tradition. This year we are on the move again and are currently in negotiations with venues so more news as it's mace, but rest assured there will be local, national and international stories for young and old celebrating and promoting storytelling as a thriving, modern, vibrant art, that is accessible and relevant to all. 

... and who are you?

The East Anglian Fabulation, who are putting on the festival, are a group of storytellers and club promoters from four different East Anglian counties, all with a proven track record of putting on stimulating, popular and successful events, and a common wish to celebrate what is unique about storytelling in East Anglia.

... and what's going to happen at this 'ere festival thing?

 There will be:

  • A three day festival, based in East Anglia
  •  Afternoon Family Storytelling sessions, featuring professional storytellers.
  • Arts and Crafts Activities for children and families
  • Daily Story Rounds
  • Sessions featuring regional professional tellers and nationally renowned headline artists (Taffy Thomas MBE, John Row)
  • Professional development sessions led by established artists sharing their practice, including networking time. 

... and what are you doing it for?

By doing this we hope to entertain and educate our audiences in the delights of storytelling and establish East Anglia as a powerhouse for the development and celebration of storytelling as a 21st century artform, that honours its artistic 'ancestors' by continuing to create and perform work that excites our modern audiences, just as they excited theirs.



"The East Anglian Storytelling Festival 2015 was a delight and an ongoing surprise.  So many great storytellers, most of them new for me, a whole richness of stories of all kinds, lots of them new for me, and many known ones reimagined through each storyteller's unique gifts.


I loved the story circles, the sessions for (tellers to) children, the folk music, the pub sessions with the wacky acoustics and jovial guests making actually hearing some of the stories a feat in itself! 


The venue was all one could wish, with it's gracious hosts, good food  and drinks, great service.  The audiences, a mix of tellers and enthusiasts of every age and persuasion, all hearing stories to take home and remember.


There was an ambience of camaraderie, generosity and laughter which I love.  Pursuing my own developing interest in stories for prisoners, I was happy to speak to others who had experience in this or are planning to do it or would like to.  This was a fine thing, as I'm still feeling my way with my audience.  I heard several story possibilities...


So all my hopes and wishes came out, and I had a marvellous time.


Thank you to every single one of you who worked to make this happen!  I can guess how much work it was, and I hope it was as successful for you as it was for me."


Kathleen van der Weerd


Programme for 2015 Festival

Once upon a time, a wonderful festival happened, and went a little something, like this....

Friday 24th July:

Campsite available from 1pm


2 – 4               Family Session         High Tent

A family friendly session with

Justine de Mierre, John Row,

Suzanne Arnold and Carl Merry


2 – 4               Storyround               Low Tent

A circle to share a story, or just come and listen

With host Gerry Donlon


4.30 – 7         Folk Music                           Pub

with The East Folk Chronicles

7.30 – 10       ​Adult storytelling                Pub

Featured Artists:

 Suzanne Arnold - “Wily Wise Women”

     Dave Tonge -  “Tonge’s Tudor Tales”

Carl Merry - “The Tylwyth Teg”

Plus guest spots from:

Gerry Donlon, Glenys Newton

and Andy Jennings

With MC Justine de Mierre

Saturday 25th July:

10 – 12          Professional Development:     

Getting Paid

(Please contact us for details if you’d like to attend)

12 - 2            Pretty Grim Morris            Pub

and folk music from Chantelle Love

2 - 4                Family Session         High Tent

With Taffy Thomas MBE

First Storytelling Laureate


2 – 4               Storyround                 Low Tent

(See Friday)

With host Carl Merry

4.30 – 7         Folk music                           Pub

With Shadows in Shade and Elly Tree

7.30 – 10       Adult storytelling                Pub

Featured Artists:

Sarah​ Walker  - “Sarah Spins Stories

John Row -  “Pootling Through”    
Justine​ de Mierre - “Wild Women”            
 Taffy Thomas MBE-  “The Devil’s Music

 and other tales”

With MC Suzanne Arnold

Sunday 26th July

10 – 12          Professional Development:      

Performance Skills

(see Saturday)


12 - 1.30         Folk Music                          Pub

with James Morgan and Silbury Hill 

2 – 4              Family Session           High Tent

A family friendly session with

Sarah Walker, Dave Tonge,

Su Squire, and Mark Scott-Ison


2 – 4               Storyround                Low Tent

(See Friday)

With host Marion Leeper


4.30 - 7          Folk Music                           Pub

with Mc2 and Poppy Scarlett 

8 – 10             Adult storytelling              Pub

Featured Artists:

Su Squire - “West Country Tales”

Mark Scott-Ison - “Tales with a Funny Bone”

Marion Leeper  - “Ships, Rivers and Wild Waters”

Plus guest spots from:

Barrie De Lara, Jan Williams and Paul Jackson

With MC Bards Aloud

Monday 27th July


10 – 12          Professional Development:      

Finding Stories

(See Saturday)

2 - 5​                Monday Folk                      Pub

Join the regular Monday gathering

for music & story sharing

...and they all lived 
happily ever after!

This was the Music and Dancing between the Tales!

Friday 24th July 


The Eastfolk Chronicles
(formerly Blyth Herald, change to advertised programme)

Saturday 25th July 


Pretty Grimm MorrisChantelle Love


Sunday 26th July


Silbury Hill

Silbury Hill - Scott Dolling (flute, guitar, vocals) and David Stainer (guitar, mandolin, vocals) - play lively folk, popular and original material. Based in Suffolk they perform throughout East Anglia, France and Belgium. They have produced two CD’s of original songs, “The Tudor Rose” and “Broadside and Mayhem”. Both include songs inspired by local history and characters.  / /




Here's our press release that told everyone all about the festival last year


From 24th to 27th July this year, professional storytellers from all over East Anglia will gather at The Ship Inn in Blaxhall for the East Anglian Storytelling Festival.  The pub has a historic tradition of hosting folk arts throughout the ages and is still a destination for folk musicians and storytellers on a weekly basis.

The festival is being organised by a collective of storytellers who call themselves an ‘East Anglian Fabulation’ – having decided that that should be the collective noun for a group of storytellers! The festival will consist of daytime sessions for families and children and evening sessions for those stories only suitable for the over 18s.

Suffolk storyteller Justine de Mierre (one of the Fabulation) explains the reason behind the festival:

“The unique thing about East Anglian storytelling, is that it’s fun and not precious; we have a tradition of irreverence; stories are borrowed, shared, adapted, annotated – whatever makes it entertaining for an audience, and we wanted to celebrate that.”

Featured tellers will include:

Taffy Thomas MBE, John Row, Dave Tong (the Yarnsmith of Norwich)

Suzanne the Storyweaver, Marion Leeper, Justine de Mierre

Carl Merry, Tilly the Talespinner, Sarah Walker and Mark Scott-Ison

- with several guest appearances from other East Anglian favourites.

The Festival is FREE to attend, but in keeping with the age old tradition audiences will be able to show their appreciation by putting some money in the hat!

There is also a 'Virtual Hat' for those that prefer to give money online - or want to support the festival but can't attend. This can be found at:

For those that wish to stay for the whole four days there will be camping available on the village green - contact the pub to reserve your pitch. There is also a youth hostel just a short walk from the pub.

Cambridge storyteller Marion Leeper says:

“All you have to do is turn up to The Ship Inn in Blaxhall. There will be stories in and around the pub, folk music and even morris dancers. There will be a chance to meet the tellers and talk about stories – everyone has a story to tell!”

The Blaxhall Ship Inn, School Road, Blaxhall, IP12 2DY (

Friday 24th July to Sunday 27th July 2015

Justine de Mierre